The Handmaid's Tale, a science-fiction novel written by Margaret Atwood, focuses on women's rights and what could happen to them in the future. This novel was later made into a movie in 1990. As with most cases of books made into movies, there are some similarities and differences between the novel and the film. Overall the film tends to stay on the same track as the book with a few minor details changed, and only two major differences.
Atwood sets the story not too far into the future, and the women have lost almost all of their rights. The original government was overthrown and taken over by Christian religious fundamentalists that believed that society was corrupt and women were not taking advantage of their "biological duties." The society now is women staying at home, servants, or "Unwomen", who are the women who are declared infertile and did not have any social status. The "Unwomen" are sent to the "colonies," which are toxic waste sites, to work, and the life expectancy there is less than three years. The main character, Offred (Kate was her real name), is a handmaid in the Republic of Gilead. Handmaids are the few fertile women left in the United States, and are sent to households and become pregnant by the man of the house and are trained for giving birth at the "Red Center." Offred is sent to a house of a powerful Commander. The Commander also has a Wife that lives in the house. The other servants in the house are Rita and Cora, the Marthas who do the cooking and housework, and Nick the chauffer, who later becomes Offred's lover. Offred is allowed to leave the house once a day to run grocery errands with a walking friend, Ofglen, who is another handmaid. Off...
... middle of paper ...
...h the arranged marriages and Handmaids. He also says, "Sometimes when you try to make things better, it's not better for everyone."
In the movie, the reasoning is approached the same type of way. Offred tries to ask the Commander about why the government changed and he replies
Nobody knew how to feel anything anymore...about respect, reverence, values you can feel in your heart, or in your case, your womb.
What the Commander says here is almost the same as what he says in the book: some women could not fulfill their destinies because of how society had become corrupted.
Generally, the film follows the storyline of Atwood's book quite well other than a few exceptions. The changes the movie made probably do work better just because of the fact that it is a movie. Some things are better explained in books than they could ever be explained in a movie.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Every human being needs certain rights to survive. There are the fundamental ones; food, water, air, shelter, but there are also other ones that are equally important to survive: love, communication, compassion, freedom. In many dystopian societies one of these fundamental needs are missing because the society is afraid that they will break the control that they have over the people. In the novel The Handmaid’s tale by Margaret Atwood the society is no different. Narrated by a woman named Offred who once was happy who had a family and a job, she shows the reader that to keep people quiet the society takes away people 's freedom, their ability to choose, their ability to be with and talk to... [tags: The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood]
1344 words (3.8 pages)
- Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, published in 1985, explores the concept of a dystopian totalitarian Christian theocracy, the Republic of Gilead, that overthrows the United States government at an unspecified point in the near future. Gilead enforces a highly controlled patriarchal and militaristic society based on fundamentalist biblical principles. This new order is necessitated by widespread infertility caused by toxic pollution and sexually transmitted diseases, as well as many women ceasing to want children.... [tags: The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood]
2094 words (6 pages)
- Rebelling The Handmaid 's Tale, by Margaret Atwood, was my favorite story we read all semester. The main character in the story, Offred, has one job to do and that is to have a baby with her commander. Offred has a friend named Moira that escaped from Republic of Gilead, so why is this story about Offred. Margaret wanted the story to be about Offred, because she will be able to get out and be free. Moira gets out, but she ends up in Jezebels. Jezebels is a place like a brotherly, I do not see this as her being free.... [tags: The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood]
1871 words (5.3 pages)
- The Handmaid`s Tale by Margaret Atwood is a novel that displays a vast amount of issues. One of those main themes in the novel is identity. In the Handmaid`s Tale the main character and narrator of our story deals with issues of identity. She battles throughout the story trying to find out who she is and remembering who she was. She constantly makes comparisons and contrasts with the life she is living in Gilead to the life she lived before the regime. As readers we notice the lack of identity of this character since the beginning.... [tags: The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood]
1751 words (5 pages)
- Within every literary work there lies a resounding truth which perfectly displays the dangers of a broken world or society. In her novel The Handmaid’s Tale, Margaret Atwood uses different ideas in her novel to convey how passivity in a broken society has detrimental effects for everyone. Throughout the novel, it is displayed that in such a dystopian society, nothing can progress in the right direction if nobody has the courage to defy the system. Through Atwood’s context given throughout her text, her stance on passivity is clearly shown as one that urges others to stand and fight instead of becoming submissive to a fragmented society.... [tags: The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood]
1042 words (3 pages)
- “[W]e are not slaves in name, and cannot be carried to market and sold as somebody else 's legal chattels, we are free only within narrow limits. For all our talk about liberation and personal autonomy, there are few choices that we are free to make” (Berry). In The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood the protagonist Offred lives through a changing of society, in which is described by Aunt Lydia in the new society as the difference of freedom to and freedom from. The complexities of freedom are examined through social norms, relationships, and safety in society.... [tags: The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood]
1344 words (3.8 pages)
- ... Society also makes women think that they are just good for having children and sex. Therefore, women lose self-esteem because of the pressure that they are faced with on a daily basis. For example, in the story, Offred has low self-esteem. She “[avoids] looking at her body, not so much because it 's shameful or immodest but because [she doesn’t] want to see it” and “[doesn’t] want to look at something that determines [her] so completely” (Atwood 63). Society has made her feel like she is nothing more than something that makes babies and she doesn’t see herself as anything more.... [tags: The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood]
1194 words (3.4 pages)
- I Tell, Therefore I Am In Margaret Atwood’s, The Handmaid’s Tale, women are subjected to unthinkable oppression. Practically every aspect of their life is controlled, and they are taught to believe that their only purpose is to bear children for their commander. These “handmaids” are not allowed to read, write or speak freely. Any type of expression would be dangerous to the order of the Gilead’s strict society. They are conditioned to believe that they are safer in this new society. Women are supposedly no longer exploited or disrespected (pornography, rape, etc.) as they once were.... [tags: Margaret Atwood The Handmaid's Tale]
878 words (2.5 pages)
- Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale Love of God replaces love of humanity in Margaret Atwood’s, The Handmaid’s Tale. Offred’s recollections of her past life, especially of her husband, are ones filled with passion and happiness as she remembers his tenderness towards her. Much more emphasis is put on the physical human form in her memories; she often remembers lying with her husband while she wears little or no clothing. Appreciation of the human form is an essential component of loving humanity.... [tags: Margaret Atwood Handmaid Tale Essays]
1418 words (4.1 pages)
- Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale Chapter nine opening section two of the novel is mainly recalling the last chapters and about the narrator rediscovering herself, surfacing the truth. In section one we see the narrator talking in the present tense in a very descriptive form, outlining the novel. However in section two we see her talking in the past tense demonstrating the stories she is telling. The separation between the human and the natural world and the narrator’s struggle with language most directly portrays the novel's dualities.... [tags: Margaret Atwood Handmaid's Tale Essays]
1712 words (4.9 pages)